It's 2024 and it feels like it's crept up on us really quickly. I'm sitting in a coffee shop somewhere in the alps (where Austria, Italy and Switzerland meet).
It's 0º outside, which is a bit better than the -4º we're had most of the week.
I've had a reasonable amount of time on this trip to do some thinking. Specifically around where I want to take this newsletter. Where I want to take my YouTube channel and possibly even Rocking.
Being in tech means everyone who knows you, generally asks you for advice and support. While this isn't always the ideal situation, it's been enlightening to see a trend over the last decade or so.
Many people, who's entire livelihood depends on the internet, are completely clueless about how the tech they need works.
This leaves them in a rather tricky situation. They never really reach their full potential. They're constantly being hamstrung or tripping themselves up with silly things not working.
I'll give you an example. A friend of mine had a client who's entire income was based off his website on a specific topic. While he was an expert in his field, and knew the topic like the back of his hand, his Wordpress website remained a mystery to him.
He could pretty much get in, post a new post and that was it. The rest was just a wild stab in the dark. He was constantly leaning on other people to help him with everything else, including his computer, backups etc.
That's just one simple example. We've have countless people we've worked with over the last decade or two, who have turned to an online income stream, but need help with getting the basics right.
Over the last 10 years I've been on an interesting journey. I started an ISP, built our own infrastructure and essentially jumped in the deep end of connectivity. Saying it's been a wild ride is an understatement.
That turned into an MSP providing companies of all sizes with connectivity / consulting / email / websites etc.
At the same time I got into the world of YouTube, and while that's been a side hustle with minimal effort, I'm about to hit 6k subs, which puts me in the top 10% of all YouTube channels.
I've built websites, mobile applications, played with just about every conceivable tech product out there.
My thinking is that with the experience I have, and the experience my team has, we can assist people trying to get into this digital journey.
You can call them by many names, soloprenuers, digital nomads, creatorpreneurs, tech startups, social media influencers, podcasters, creators etc
But one thing they all have in common is that they're trying to make money online. They're trying to figure out the underlying tech to make that all happen, which can be a very frustrating journey.
The tech work I've done over the last 2+ decades of my life has all been focused on small businesses and the SMB market in local communities.
Shifting my focus to help online businesses do better, manage their tech better and make more money seems to me, to be the next step in what I want to do.
I haven't quite figured out how to do this yet. One thought is to create a community in Circle where there are forums and people can ask questions etc. We can also add courses in Circle covering various topics.
A Slack or Discord community could be quite useful too. Alternatively just use something like Kajabi and create a range of courses people can pay for on a one time basis or have access to all of them for a monthly membership.
In some ways I'm trying to solve some of the same problems my target audience have. Which platforms should we use? How do we roll out a product on the Internet? What do we charge? What kind of business model do we use?
So for 2024, I'll keep Rocking going exactly as it has. We've had a rough couple of years, and we're just starting to pull that business through the woods.
But I'll be working on how to help digital entrepreneurs use tech to run better more profitable online businesses.